Hello lovely. I'm Sas.

photos-mystory1I’m a Certified Coach trained by Dr. Martha Beck and the Coaches Training Institute and right now, I’m wading through an MA in Coaching & Mentoring at Oxford Brookes (yep, I likes to be learnin’).

I became a coach after almost twenty years of helping thousands of people navigate change in their place of work, and facing the crucibles in my own life: grief, loss and longing.

My own transformation path has led me right to you.

First, some backstory…

When I was five, I was in the Red Group at my tiny village school in New Zealand, because I was best at reading. I had to sit at the front of the class because I was also best at talking. And questioning. Everything. All the time.

I have a boundless curiosity for words and people, stories and ideas.

At university I studied psychology, philosophy, poetry, feminism, theology and politics; consequently I’m a fabulous dinner party guest. I also learnt not to ever let anyone cut your hair, in exchange for a Def Leppard CD.

mystory1

But no amount of book learning could prepare me for the sudden death of my beloved mother, one random Tuesday in 2002.

A year later came the equally unceremonious end of my marriage.

Grief-struck and sad, I raged against the universe for all the ways I had been wronged.

During the day, I was leading big complex projects; at night I resorted to my lifelong default of food and wine to numb out my too-hard-to-feel feelings. I spent a lot of time in my little London flat, thinking.

Then I had a LOT of therapy.

I decided I did not want this to be my story.

Instead, I decided to say yes. Often.

And I found myself playing cards until 3am with several German backpackers in an underground Estonian bar, exploring the Grand Bazaar in Istanbul and running with bulls in Pamplona. I was woken by the call to prayer in a Marrakech riad, kayaked the Cares Gorge and climbed the Picos Mountains in Northern Spain. I watched the sun set in Santorini, attended the dawn service at ANZAC cove, and survived a snowstorm in the Swiss Alps with cider, strudel and uno. I crossed the Charles Bridge in Prague and backpacked around Italy for weeks; I compared the breakfast pastries of New York, Bruges, Amsterdam, Copenhagen and Paris and had my luggage lost every single time I flew Iberia airlines.

mystory3
My pendulum had swung from ‘Woman Curled Up in a Ball’, to ‘Most Likely to Skinny Dip’ for half a dozen years of exhausting, brilliant fun.

But I knew I was a disembodied head chasing the next high.

Work, pinot noir, shopping, food, too many adventures with infelicitous lovers — it was all an Olympic-level exercise in staying busy, to avoid being alone and facing the truth: that I felt broken, disconnected and angry, often with a little guilt and shame sprinkled on top. Neat.

It wasn’t until I stopped trying to outrun vulnerability and uncertainty that I really started to heal.

Utterly knackered, I went home to New Zealand to rest. Staying still allowed me to breathe out. I began to feel all the scary feelings. It was like wearing a scratchy, woolly jumper 24/7.

It felt epically crappy. But I knew it was real. I opened myself up to the whole spectrum of emotion, and everything transformed.

mystory2
Over time I was able to love all of my story; heart-shaking losses, and cringe-worthy mistakes included.

I know this will be a lifelong practice.

I began writing on the interwebs in 2007, and found myself connecting to the most amazing peeps. A magical alchemy of healing, teaching and learning came from sharing and it’s no small truth to say that blogging changed my life. I found myself, my voice, and eventually my way home to a life I couldn’t have dreamed up.

And here I am: sober, amplified and thriving, without all of my shit together, mostly in the flow of an awakened life.

I have a conscious, loving relationship with my body, cherished friends who expand me in all the best ways. I’ve found the place I feel most at home is next to an English woodland, 12,000 miles from the tiny New Zealand village where I was born.

And after almost two decades of working really hard at trying to fit in, I morphed from a six-figure earning Corporateer (like a Mouseketeer but waaaay crapper) to finding my original medicine.

I share my life with Ash: Mr P – my best friend and co-conspirator – I don’t ever want our conversation to be over.

I’d love to get to know you.

Big love,

sas

worktogether